The following article is by Dan John. His brand new book Before We Go: An Ongoing Philosophy of Lifting, Living and Learning is available for preorder now (copies ship Nov 18th).
Coaching is an art and a science. How to be a good coach balances the skill set of a used car salesman, a ship’s captain and a cable TV comedy show host.
Knowing what you’re doing is part of the battle. Implementing the right thing(s) to do is where the real art begins. And, not to forget, even the perfect plan has to be flexible enough to turn and change on the whims of life, the universe and everything else that may come up.
I have a few principles that keep me from losing most of my mind. Here’s the 10 skills any coach must balance:
1. Constant Assessment
Certainly, there are formal tools for assessment and they have great value. We can measure practically everything about you with standing long jumps, the FMS, heart rate tests and all of the rest. True coaching is constant assessment.
It’s hard to grasp. When something simply doesn’t look right, you need to address it quickly and correctly even if you don’t have the exact problem sorted out yet. That’s why as a good coach you never stop learning.
2. Constant Upgrading
Whether it’s books for personal trainers, articles, workshops or sitting in a bar, good coaches are always looking for a better way…a clearer path. Discernment is a rare skill, but the ability to pick and choose “…